tv ABC World News With David Muir ABC July 21, 2012 6:30pm-7:00pm EDT
y who believes in america. [ romney ] i'm mitt romney and i approve this message. tonight on a special edition of "world news" from colorado. authorities are breaking through the gunman's traps right now. tonight, federal agents joined the police in aurora. called in to help at the apartment. this is something they have never seen before. also, the delicate mission some place else. the trauma rooms. "world news" getting access to the intensive care unit. where we see the critically wounded firsthand. and the loss. a father's desperate search. >> tell me where he is, okay, find my son. i don't know where he is. >> we learn of the son, gone. and the brave mother remembering her daughter. what she told diane sawyer and what so many of you did. from abc news, this is a
special edition of "world news" with david muir. tragedy in colorado, the movie theater massacre. and good evening, tonight, from aurora, colorado. as we come on the air, the delicate task continues. federal teams are now here. a bomb squad works through the suspect's apartment. after the devastating mass shooting in the theater right behind me here. the suspect trapping so many people in the theater. it was clear he wanted to trap the police that then showed up at his apartment. all day, investigators have been at the suspect's apartment. earlier today, we heard this. [ explosion ] it was a controlled explosion. investigators starting to set off the booby traps inside. there are jars of unknown liquids, the 30 devices, so they could get to the real clues.
the latest toll, 12 people have died, 58 wounded. eight remain in contract call condition. the suspect, james holmes is in isolation. the suspect received guns and bullets for months. our team is on the story tonight with new details about the suspect, those who died. and about the survivors who have defied even the doctors. the explosives, we learn, have been removed. tonight, federal authorities have joined the local police here, trying to carefully break through the gunman's trap. bomb squads taking care of the apartment. we found police tape and patrols surrounding the neighborhood for blocks. four buildings evacuated. wanted to give you a sense of all this. this is the suspect's building. the third floor. you can see the fire ladder up there over the building. the heavy, heavy police presence. federal authorities of course now here going in. they have police tape for several blocks. the media is kept on the sidewalk here. we go inside the apartment.
one of the gunman's neighbors. just as the power goes out. authorities cutting electricity as a precaution. this mother frightened for her children. [ speaking spanish ] she says she's nervous. they have a clear view from her window of the suspect's apartment. the suspect's apartment is about 800 square feet. inside, several trip wires rigged to trigger explosions. scattered throughout the living room, 30 explosive devices, including jars with chemicals and 30 shells with explosive powder, similar to large fireworks. the police chief telling us the suspect's intentions were clear. >> this apartment was designed, based on everything i have seen, to kill whoever entered it. >> reporter: across town tonight, the other extraordinarily careful work still under way. the efforts to save the critically bounded by the gunman's other trap inside the theater.
today, we were given access to the intensive care unit. eight people in critical condition. fighting for their lives. two of them right here. tonight, an extraordinary comeback. we were allowed to visit stephen barton. shot in the arm, the neck, the face. steve? >> how's it going? >> reporter: how are you? the syracuse university graduate was biking across the country. that speech he gave, he was holding a camera. talking about the image to remember your life. >> capturing the most meaningful moments of my life. >> reporter: that thursday night, he took a photo of his movie ticket and posted it. and now we see this. an image of survival. >> definitely. i'm very glad. i feel blessed. >> reporter: blessed he said to survive the shots to his neck. he showed me the wounds. he hasn't counted them. while we were there, we learned that he could be moved from intensive care as soon as tonight. >> i have long scars. i kind of like that because
every morning i can look in the mirror and see the scars and be reminded that you have to live life to the fullest. >> reporter: he's going to get out of the icu soon? >> i think so. i think so. >> reporter: is he supposed to hear that? >> he's probably already heard that. >> reporter: he's got his bike outside the door. >> that doesn't mean he's going home. steve could be upgraded tonight. we're all pulling for him. that doctor, by the way, answered the call after columbine here. he answered the call this time, too. the police chief saying the booby trap was designed to kill whoever was in the apartment. abc's cecelia vega has new detail about the suspect and the neighbor who came so close to setting off the traps without knowing it. >> reporter: authorities have been out here all day trying to get inside this wal-maapartmenty
and preserve the evidence inside. we're learning more about the man accused of all of this horror and his alleged plot to kill so many. to his neighbors, james holmes was a complete mystery. he rarely said hello, always kept to himself. on friday morning, the couple living directly below him came close to crossing his path. >> at exactly midnight, we heard loud techno music. >> reporter: it seemed to be on a loop. she banged on the door. >> i put my hand on the doorknob. i went to walk in. something stopped me. i don't know what. i was fearful for whatever reason. i didn't know what was going to happen. i thought something was weird. >> reporter: she had no idea that behind the door is what police call a death trap. so far, just a few photos of holmes have emerged. smiling in his high school yearbook. and as a neuroscience ph.d. student at the university of colorado. remarkably, in today's virtual world this 24-year-old seems to have no online footprint.
some experts say extreme internet usage, even none at all, could be a sign of depressi depression. to those who know him, he is quiet, an introvert. >> a nice kid. grew up in a nice neighborhood. i don't know what happened. >> reporter: it's a question being asked around the world. what happened? and why? holmes was raised in this san diego neighborhood. he once reportedly worked as a camp counselor for troubled kids. he was an honor student who did not walk in his graduation ceremony. some who grew up with him called him a loner. no one saw this coming. >> he was the kind of person if you teased him, he would sit and smile and not do anything about it. >> reporter: and holmes has been booked in county jail. the police chief saying the most important thing is getting justice for the victims and their families. david? >> cecelia vega tonight. thank you. we took you inside the suspect's apartment. the hunt for his computer. the hard drive for clues to why
he went to that theater and opened fire. tonight, investigators have pieced together just how james holmes obtained all of that fire power to unleash his rage. four guns, 6,000 rounds of ammunition. abc's pierre thomas working his sources again tonight. here's what he learned. >> reporter: james holmes quietly began building his arsenal two months ago. buying his first gun, a glock pistol at gander mountain guns in aurora. over the next several weeks, he bought more guns at colorado gun shops. a tactical shotgun. another pistol. and a high-powered assault rifle, the primary murder weapon. he filled out a form, showed i.d. he had no criminal record. 6,000 rounds of ammunition, all bought online legally. no questions asked. he amassed s.w.a.t. gear. and body armor, all bought online. all of it brought to bear for a
packed movie theater where he would shoot 70 people. tonight, authorities are trying to determine if there was a triggering event, something dramatic in the suspect's life that sparked this murderous campaign. sources say he became increasingly unstable in the last few weeks. now to the other emerging story line tonight. the loved ones lost. the families waiting for word, holding out hope. police have now notified the families. they've now released that official list. also on the ground here tonight, daifrd wright. >> reporter: there was a real-life villain inside the theater. but real-life heroes, too. >> that guy got shot. look. >> reporter: people who saved their girlfriends' lives by sacrificing their own. sailor john larimer leapt over his seat to save his girlfriend. his sailor buddies dragged his body of of the theater.
not willing to leave their buddy behind. alex teves jumped in front of his girlfriend. taking a bullet that would have hit her. and matt mcquinn saved his girlfriend the same way. she was injured. shot in the leg. but the family says, mcquinn's quick actions saved her life. last night, the coroner broke the news to families. >> tell me where he is, okay. find my son. i don't know where he is. okay? somebody find him and call us. tell him to call us. >> reporter: his son never called. yesterday was alex sullivan's birthday. instead of celebrating, his father learned he's dead. in hospital rooms across the denver area, survivors are struggling to make sense of all this. 14-year-old protio now has a bullet hole in his back. is that bullet still inside you? >> it's still inside me, yes. they said they won't take it out. they said it's in a safe place. it won't do me in harm. i see life differently. >> reporter: how so? >> it's shocking to see how fast you could die. how fragile life is.
>> reporter: how do you think this will change your life? >> it will make me more careful in what i do. i'll try to think twice before i do something. and you know, movie premiers, there's more people, maybe next time, i'll wait until it's dvd. >> reporter: he's 14 years old. he may never go to the movies again. he's expected to be released from the hospital today. he said the first thing he's going to do is go and see his mom. she was also injured. she underwent surgery today in a hospital clear across town. david? >> david wright thank you. pulling for that mom tonight. some of the first alerts we heard about this horrific event came through facebook and twitter, through text messages. tonight from a mother who lost her daughter with a simple request. so many people on twitter talking about the suspect. that mother instead saying, why not remember her daughter, tweet her daughter's name instead.
more than 19,000 of you tweeting her daughter's name. here, tonight, diane, with the mother of jessica ghawi. >> you said at one point she was a jolt of lightning. >> yes. i don't know who said that but that would be an accurate description. she was like a jolt of lightning. we would tease when show would come home for a visit, she would walk in the door and it was automatic chaos because of the energy level she brought into a room. >> i think it is going to stun everyone that she was there in toronto. >> yes. >> and there was that awful shooting there. >> yes, and she was -- very affected by watching the victims being brought out of that shooting. and realizing that -- several of them were very close to her own age. and realized that life is very fragile. she's -- she had an epiphany at that moment that it could happen
to any of us at any time. and instead of being afraid of that, she embraced life even more fully. >> sandy phillips was planning a visit to colorado to visit her daughter next week. our thanks to her and diane. for that interview last night. as we reported, it appears james holmes obtained his arsenal legally. it's one reason new york mayor michael bloomberg is lashing out after the shooting. demanding that mitt romney and president obama start talking about tougher gun control. there was a real push here after the columbine shootings 13 miles from this movie theater. and so we asked tonight, has anything changed? abc's clayton sandell getting answers. >> reporter: colorado is again grieving. a new round of vigils. something that seems all too frequent to tom mauser. >> we're a nation that is awash in violence. >> reporter: he lost his son,
daniel, in the massacre at columbine high school. he believes in the years since two student gunmen killed 13 people, not enough has changed. to toughen gun laws. >> it makes me angry. it makes me sad for america that we have other countries looking at us saying, what is going on there? are you people nuts? it's not just the assault rifle. it's the magazines that can hold 30, 50, 100 rounds. they make it easy for people like this. >> reporter: after columbine, colorado passed a law to conduct back round checks at gun shows on buyers. there is though state ban on high-powered rifles or clips. no limit on the number of guns you can buy. at this gun show we visited today in loveland, colorado, even gun advocates agree the system is not perfect. >> you can't stop selling guns. if you're going to be in an armed country, you have the deal with occasional fruit loops, i think. that's the way it goes, really. it's unfortunate.
it really is. >> reporter: when asked what is more important, protecting the rights of gun owners or creating more restrictive gun laws, americans are divided. they don't seem to change attitudes after horrific events like this. david? >> clayton sandell on the emerging conversation coming out. and still ahead on this special edition of "world news saturday." the man behind the mask speaking out tonight. a new statement from actor christian bale. about the pain and grief surrounding the movie he's now starring in. his message when we come back. lettuce, organic kale... gc does your cauliflower have a big carbon footprint? not at all. that's great. melons!!! oh yeah!! well that was uncalled for. uhh...mr. gallagher. incoming!!! it's wasteful. you know jimmy. folks who save hundreds of dollars switching to geico sure are happy. how happy, ronny? happier than gallagher at a farmers' market. get happy. get geico.
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we're still committed to seeing this through. from hollywood tonight, word that the studios won't release box office numbers this weekend. and now actor christian bale says, i can not begin to truly understand the pain and grief of the victim and their loved ones. my heart goes out to them. still, tonight, moviegoers are turning out. here's john schriffen now. >> reporter: batman's biggest fans are flocking to movie theaters around the country this weekend. >> there are your tickets. >> reporter: despite friday's carnage in colorado. >> we're nervous. we're going to go any way. >> a storm coming. >> reporter: this weekend, it's not the violence on the screen giving parents pause. >> i have a teenager. i'm a little afraid. when he says he's going to the
movies, i'll think he's safe and he might not be. >> reporter: police have stepped up security at theaters in new york and los angeles. some undercover. >> i do feel more comfortable seeing the police here. >> reporter: movie theaters are tightening up their own security. >> we got here, we were not allowed to bring in our back pax. >> reporter: the vast majority think colorado is an isolated incident. >> i feel safe. i feel fine. it's a movie. we can't let stuff like that deter us from seeing movies. >> reporteter: industry watcher expect the movie to make a lot of money this weekend. out of respect for the victims' family members, they will not release box off numbers until monday. >> thank you, john. when we come back, the other news of the day. including a breaking headline involving a media titan. and then back here from colorado. coming together after a tragedy like this one. the one request made at a vigil and so many people listened. hat.
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run some of his newspapers. syrian rebels have pushed into one of the big cities there. aleppo. normally a stronghold of the president, bashir assad. the chaos is spreading beyond the borders now with the u.n. estimate that 120,000 syrians have fled to neighboring countries. and back here in this country tonight. dangerous heat from east texas to south dakota. the southeast, flooding rains. new orleans, record rainfall. and more will fall all weekend long. in north carolina, a shopping mall in charlotte is partially closed after heavy rains caused a partial roof collapse. the simple request made here and we were stunned to see so many people listening.
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and finally tonight, here, the struggle to heal. all over the city of aurora, colorado, people have been spontaneously reaching out, trying to understand. trying to help one another. we captured one of those moments. it was a simple request we heard. they came from all over the community to light a candle here. so many did the same a little more than a decade ago. after the shooting at columbine high school. while we were there this time, we were moved by a simple instruction from a pastor. >> use the spirit in you right now to find four people. give them the best hug you have. find four and give them the best hugs you have. >> reporter: they listened. they hugged. strangers trying to rebuild the community. >> it's a great community. it's just hard. it's not, i mean -- how terrible this whole thing is.
>> reporter: most of the people here didn't know the victims. but everyone was hurt. the pain clear on their faces. jessica noble did. she had a friend she lost in that theater. she knew others that were wounded. she came to the vigil and found the hug she needed from a complete stranger. >> they're miles away. they showed up to be here to support. it's really -- it's thoughtful. she didn't know me. she came up and prayed for me. >> so many hugs across this city. that is "world news" there colorado this evening. follow the latest developments at abcnews.com overnight. "good morning america" first thing in the morning. i'll report tomorrow night. good night.